All this researching and writing about weight loss has me thinking about why we get fat in the first place. So I made a list.
- Shift to agriculture. No more hunting & gathering means we can sit on our asses and have food brought to us.
- Capitalism. For it to work, we have to consume, more and more and more. Food is a big part of the US economy.
- Sugar & grain marketers. They influenced gov’t policy – the bullshit food pyramid. They spent trillions on ads. General Mills, Kraft, ConAgra, M&M Mars, Coca Cola, Pepsi, Sara Lee, etc. I have friends who worked for these companies and they were scared by consumers shifting to less sugar & grains.
- Peer pressure. Our friends, family, & co-workers generally expect us to eat & drink the same things as them at the same time as them. They’re having a beer? We’re having a beer. Mom made pancakes? Dad expects you to eat them. Co-worker brought birthday cupcakes? Enjoy.
- Trauma – Something traumatic happened in the past and the memories trigger pain so we eat to cope, distract, and isolate ourselves.
- Sexual insecurity / repression – Possibly related to trauma, but we eat to fatten ourselves so that we’re less attractive to others and won’t have to deal with unwanted sexual advances OR we eat to try and repress sexual desires we’d rather not acknowledge.
- Boredom – We lead a sedentary life that revolves around work, watching TV, and satisfying the needs of others (like family & kids). We don’t have fun activities regularly scheduled that entertain us and distract us from eating.
- Stress – We have jobs that we hate or are improperly trained for. We have long commutes. We agonize over poor life choices that seem irreversible. We don’t have enough money or time. People in our life don’t meet our expectations. We eat to cope, to forget, to numb the pain.
- Informational disadvantage – We try to eat healthy, but don’t have the correct information about what foods to eat to lose weight / stay skinny.
You can see from these factors that weight loss is complicated. The answer to why we get fat is usually not so straightforward. Just supplying you w/ information on HOW to lose weight probably won’t be enough.
There have to be systems & routines in place to circumvent all the factors above.
If you’re trying to lose weight please read 13 things to NOT do when trying to lose weight.
I’ve got some things coming that will hopefully make it easier for you!
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– Mr Skinny Pants